Manicomio by Raymond Depardon. First edition. First impression. Large format paperback in new condition. No markings. This is a new book. Please see pictures. PayPal accepted, any questions please get in touch.
“In 1977, I met Franco Basaglia, director of the manicomio (lunatic asylum) at the hospital in Triest, who was also the leader of an alternative psychiatric movement. Taking advantage of the chaotic political situation in Italy at the time, he started to close several psychiatric hospitals with a group of doctors, and had ‘Law 180’ passed in 1978, which resulted in the definitive closure of the asylums. Franco encouraged me to take photographs of this reality, ‘If not, they will not believe us,’ he told me.
With more than a hundred thousand people interned in psychiatric asylums all over Italy, the situation was indeed dramatic. He also introduced me to directors of other asylums in Venice, Naples, Arezzo and Turin.
For four years, until the closure of the hospital on the island of San Clemente very close to Venice, I photographed these places of pain to preserve them in memory and to pay tribute to Franco Basaglia – who died from a sudden illness in 1980. My film about San Clemente came out in 1982, but it’s only now thirty years later – after a long pause – that I have finally edited and designed the photographic work that was begun all those years ago.” – Raymond Depardon
Raymond Depardon, born in France in 1942, began taking photographs on his family farm in Garet at the age of 12. Apprenticed to a photographer optician in Villefranche-sur-Saône, he then left for Paris in 1958.
He joined the Dalmas agency in Paris in 1960 as a reporter, and then in 1966 he co-founded the Gamma agency, reporting from all over the world. From 1974 to 1977, as a photographer and filmmaker, he covered the kidnap of a French ethnologist, François Claustre, in northern Chad. Alongside his photographic career, he also began to make documentary films: 1974, Une Partie de Campagne and San Clemente.
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